Tuesday, December 31, 2013

It's Not Over

There were many a Christmas when I was sad that the holiday was over after the presents were opened.  This year we put up our tree two days before Christmas.  I'm at a place now where I enjoy celebrating the birth of Christ and celebrate the twelve days of Christmas.  It's a time when most  trees are being packed up or thrown out to the curb, and Christmas lights and music have ceased.  The rest of the world is finished with Christmas.   The hustle, bustle and noise is over.   For me... these 12 days of Christmas are quieter and less busy.  This enable's me to reflect deeper.  It's most special.  





Monday, November 11, 2013

Father Vincent Capodanno & Veteran's Day

 
Below are the last words of military chaplain Father Vincent Capodanno.  Soon after he said these words to a wounded soldier.... he was shot 27 times while shielding another soldier during a fierce battle in Vietnam. 
 
 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Monday, August 5, 2013

The Core Of The Church


The core of the Church is the Holy Eucharist.  No matter what your view is of Church doctrine....how can one turn their back on receiving the Body of Christ?  This is a Church that many people consider a relic of the past.  This is a Church that can't offer anything.  Really?  Do Catholics really understand their faith?  I would bet that if the Church changed doctrine on the hot topics....that still wouldn't draw people to Her.  What draws me to The Church is the Blessed Sacrament.  It's simple.  It is not the liturgy.  It is not the music.  It is not the art work.  It is not the homily or either the smells or bells.  These things are present in the mass to inspire us.  
 
Then the Jews began arguing with each other about what he meant.  "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?"  they asked. 
So Jesus said it again, "With all the earnestness I possess I tell you this:  Unless you eat the flesh of the Messiah and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you.  
John 6:52-53.  
 
As they sat down to eat, he asked God's blessing on the food and then took a small loaf of bread and broke it and was passing it over to them...when suddenly, it was as though their eyes were opened...they recognized him!  And at that moment he disappeared!
Luke 24:30-31 

Monday, July 8, 2013

Everything Sad Will Be Made Untrue

 
This really is the truth... bad things will ultimately be made good.  This is our hope.  When we witness miracles or Godwinks (sometimes confused with coincidences)...we are witnessing heaven on earth.  I think it's a glimpse of what's to come.  God gives us examples everyday of what life in heaven with Him will be like.  Pope John Paul II will be made a Saint in a few months.  A woman in Costa Rica was suffering from an incurable brain aneurysm.  Her family made a shrine to Blessed Pope John Paul II and prayed for his intercession to cure her.  While watching his Beatification (the Latin meaning of blessed) on TV....she looked at a picture of him that was in a magazine that she was reading.  She immediately heard the words..."Get up and do not be afraid."  She was cured.  Did you know that the phrase "do not be afraid" is mentioned 365 times in the bible?  Let us be still and take notice. 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Independence Day


As we celebrate the birth of our nation,  let us not forget the words of our forefathers….
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and pursuit of Happiness: that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
~ The Declaration of Independence (1776)
 

Monday, May 27, 2013

It was Septemeber 13, 1944 on the USS Warrington

A few years back before my mom passed away.... we all went
to New York to see my daughter perform at Carnegie Hall.  We also had somewhere else to visit that was long over do.
We took my mom to Battery Park to see the memorial for the soilders that drowned and who were never recovered in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean during WWII.

Two days out of Norfolk, along the Florida coast, a navy destroyer named the USS Warrington  received word that she was steaming directly into a hurricane. Later that evening, the storm forced the destroyer to heave. Keeping wind and sea on her port bow, Warrington rode relatively well through most of the night. Wind and seas, however, continued to build during the early morning hours of September 13th 1944. Warrington began to lose headway and, as a result, started to ship water through the vents to her engineering spaces.

The water rushing into her vents caused a loss of electrical power which set off a chain reaction. Her main engines lost power, and her steering engine and mechanism went out. She wallowed there in the trough of the swells, continuing to ship water. She regained headway briefly and turned upwind, while her radiomen desperately, but fruitlessly, tried to contact another nearby vessel. Finally, she resorted to a plain-language distress call to any ship or shore station. By noon on the 13th, it was apparent that Warrington's crewmen could not win the struggle to save their ship, and the order went out to prepare to abandon ship. By 12:50, her crew had left Warrington; and she went down almost immediately. A prolonged search by 10 other vessels rescued only five officers and 68 men of the destroyer's 20 officers and 301 men.

My mother's brother...Chief Storekeeper USNR Edward John Labuda was one of the men lost at sea.  He had just been home on leave prior to returning to duty.
 
The memorial says....
 
My mother looking at her brother's name engraved in stone for the first time.
 
La Buda Edward J.
 
His name on the wall faces the Statue of Liberty and
 
.....Ellis Island.  The same port where his father entered the United States as an immigrant years before.

Thank you to all of those that made the ultimate sacrifice.  You're forever in our debt and hearts.  Indeed...in to thy hands, O Lord.


Thursday, May 23, 2013

A Moment With The Sisters

 
I think nuns are fascinating.  Maybe it's because we live in an age of materialism and how does one give up everything?  I came across this video on You Tube and it gives us a peek of the sisters experiencing the same thing we all did....a few months back.  Watching them brought back wonderful memories of that day.
 
 


Saturday, May 11, 2013

Mother's, St. Augustine

 
There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of my mom.  My sister said.... that her passing was even harder because we had lost our first love.  Since my mom's passing.... I've been on a journey to know God and my faith. 
My parish priest suggested... that my mom....after her passing.... had something to do in prompting me to start this journey.  God certainly calls us to Him in many different ways.  To those of you that have your mom still...cherish your times with her and respect her.  For those of you that don't have your mom...know that she's still with you. 
 
 
Our Catholic faith gives us many role models of great mother's.  There's no other greater mother than the Mother of God. Since my mom has passed away... I have clung to Our Lady and my relationship with her has flourished.   
Another role model is St. Gianna.  St. Gianna was diagnosed with cancer and was urged to abort her baby so she could receive treatments.  She refused to give up her baby.  A few days after giving birth...Gianna passed away.   
I can't forget about St. Monica.  Her son Augustine was always in her prayers.  He lived a life that was contradictory to a Christian.  Through her perseverance in praying...he found God and became a doctor of the Catholic Church!  We refer to him as St. Augustine.
Below is a you tube movie of his life and the role his mother (St. Monica) played in it.  It's a 2 part movie and it gets a thumbs up from me.
 
 
Another favorite mother of mine is Mother Angelica.  She's the foundress of the Eternal Word Television Network.  She has helped to bring many Catholics back to the faith.  She has helped to bring many from different denominations to Catholicism.  She has helped to bring atheists to Catholicism.
Lastly, the greatest gift I have ever received were my children.  I miscarried a child many years ago.  When my time here is over... I look forward to holding her in heaven.
Happy Mother's Day.  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Sunday, April 7, 2013

His Divine Mercy. When Life For Me Began To Change


 
For me, God had always been calling but I wasn't listening until a few years back.... when someone I loved died and I needed their forgiveness.  I fell into a pit and thought I'd never escape this torment of guilt, for the person I needed to forgive me never could.  They had left this life forever.  I had no where to turn and the thought of living with this guilt seemed overwhelming.  Only through the grace of God, He continued to call me and this time I stopped to listen.  I picked up the bible and decided to get to know Him.  I read and read and read.  While reading the bible one day, I realized at that most beautiful, peaceful moment, God is merciful and forgives.  I had experienced His unconditional love and His Divine Mercy.  This was a turning point and a moment I shall never forget.  I went to confession and I have been seeking Him ever since.     
 
"If souls would put themselves completely in My care, I Myself would undertake the task of sanctifying them, and I would lavish even greater graces on them.   There are souls who thwart My efforts, but I have not given up on them; as often as they turn to Me, I hurry to their aid, shielding them with My mercy, and I give them the first place in My compassionate Heart."
 
Divine Mercy in My Soul
Diary
of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread

 

Christ in the Eucharist



John 6:30 begins a colloquy that took place in the synagogue at Capernaum. The Jews asked Jesus what sign he could perform so that they might believe in him. As a challenge, they noted that "our ancestors ate manna in the desert." Could Jesus top that? He told them the real bread from heaven comes from the Father. "Give us this bread always," they said. Jesus replied, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst." At this point the Jews understood him to be speaking metaphorically.

 
Jesus first repeated what he said, then summarized: "‘I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh.’ The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, ‘How can this man give us his flesh to eat?’" (John 6:51–52).
His listeners were stupefied because now they understood Jesus literally—and correctly. He again repeated his words, but with even greater emphasis, and introduced the statement about drinking his blood: "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him" (John 6:53–56).

Notice that Jesus made no attempt to soften what he said, no attempt to correct "misunderstandings," for there were none. Our Lord’s listeners understood him perfectly well. They no longer thought he was speaking metaphorically. If they had, if they mistook what he said, why no correction?
On other occasions when there was confusion, Christ explained just what he meant (cf. Matt. 16:5–12). Here, where any misunderstanding would be fatal, there was no effort by Jesus to correct. Instead, he repeated himself for greater emphasis.
In John 6:60 we read: "Many of his disciples, when they heard it, said, ‘This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?’" These were his disciples, people used to his remarkable ways. He warned them not to think carnally, but spiritually: "It is the Spirit that gives life, the flesh is of no avail; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life" (John 6:63; cf. 1 Cor. 2:12–14).
But he knew some did not believe. (It is here, in the rejection of the Eucharist, that Judas fell away; look at John 6:64.) "After this, many of his disciples drew back and no longer went about with him" (John 6:66).
This is the only record we have of any of Christ’s followers forsaking him for purely doctrinal reasons. If it had all been a misunderstanding, if they erred in taking a metaphor in a literal sense, why didn’t he call them back and straighten things out? Both the Jews, who were suspicious of him, and his disciples, who had accepted everything up to this point, would have remained with him had he said he was speaking only symbolically.
But he did not correct these protesters. Twelve times he said he was the bread that came down from heaven; four times he said they would have "to eat my flesh and drink my blood." John 6 was an extended promise of what would be instituted at the Last Supper—and it was a promise that could not be more explicit. Or so it would seem to a Catholic. But what do Fundamentalists say?
Catholic.com


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Feast Day Of St. Joseph & The Installation of Pope Frances

 
 
There is not a word from Joseph in Scripture.  Although, actions of his life are recorded.
He taught Jesus a trade and how to behave.  He was chosen to care for Jesus and Mary.  He was an example to his son on how to love and respect.  Joseph was humble and God's obedient helper.  He always did God's will, no matter how hard it was or what others thought.  You can also pray for St. Joseph's intercession for a happy death.  He must have been comforted by Jesus and Mary in his passing.
My dad's name is Joseph and he was born in March.  I was blessed to have him as my father and I hope other father's can take the time to learn about St. Joseph and imitate him in their child rearing.
Monica from Little Jesus and Me explains a beautiful custom for St. Joseph. 
 
Today was the installation of Pope Frances.  
In his homily at his installation mass he said:
 "We must not be afraid of goodness, of tenderness!"
After mass he greets the faithful. 
He also greets the disabled.
He's an example of tenderness and goodness.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

WE HAVE A PAPA!

Joy to the Church!
 
 
Let the bells ring!
 
 
We have a Papa!
Pope Frances
He's an Argentinian and
a man of the people.
 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Adopt A Cardinal

 
Adopt a Cardinal here.
By spiritually adopting him you'll have the privilege to pray for your Cardinal during the papal conclave in picking out the next Pope.
 
My Cardinal is Crescenzio Sepe, from Italy, born 6/2/1943.  He's been a Cardinal since 2001, which means he was a Cardinal during the last papal conclave.  His function is Archbishop of Naples, Italy.



 
 
 
 

Friday, March 1, 2013

THE BIBLE



 

THE BIBLE is an upcoming television mini series.  It's produced by Roma Downey of Touched by an Angel and her husband Mark Burnett producer of Survivor and The Voice.  It begins this Sunday (3/3/13) and will air for the next 5 consecutive weeks, ending on Easter Sunday.  The bible series will cover Genesis through Revelation.  It's a 10 hour series and will air on the History Channel at 8/7 EST.



Thursday, February 28, 2013

From Pope to Pilgrim

 
Pope Benedict's XVI final tweet: "Thank you for your love and support. May you always experience the joy that comes from putting Christ at the (center) of your lives."

Monday, February 25, 2013

Did You Know?


 
Did you know that the sign of the cross is a short but powerful prayer?
Make the sign of the cross anytime during the day.  Offer it up if you feel tempted, worried, scared, in danger, passing a church, in thanksgiving, or for a person in distress.
 
A sign in the form of a cross made by the Christian as a prayer honoring the Blessed Trinity, "in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."
 
(2157; cf. 786)  The Catechism of The Catholic Church

Sunday, February 24, 2013

What to Expect

 
 
 
 
Mysteries of Christ's life:
 
His birth
 
His ministry
 
His miracles

His forgiveness
 
His passion and suffering
 
His Resurrection

His love

Should we expect any less in our life?
 





Monday, February 11, 2013

Holy Father Resigns


  
News early this morning of the Holy Father resigning from the Papacy came as a surprise.
I never knew that a pope could resign!  Blessed John Paul II carried out his Papacy while suffering with Parkinson's disease.  He was an example to us.  He taught his flock the value of  suffering, aging and life.
For the good of the church, Pope Benedict through prayer and discernment chose a different path.  Humbly, he chose to resign due to advancing age.
He is doing what his Shepard is calling him to do. 
Our next pope will be unique, in the sense that, he'll receive prayers and counsel from a living and retired pope.  This hasn't occurred in over 600 years.
 


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Seek, and You Will Find

  
  One of the most common questions I hear, is why don't Catholics know their faith?  Why aren't they on fire for it? 
I can only speak for myself. 
For most of my life, I too wondered the same thing.   
I went to Catholic school from grades 2-8 during the late 60's and early 70's.
The teaching of catechises seemed to be in transition.  
  I didn't witness the love for God or for the Church from my lay teachers or even from the few nuns that taught there.  
The Church was going through changes. 
The secular world was on fire with materialism, feminism, the introduction of birth control, and legalized abortion.  
College education was on the rise. 
Education is great for learning to think outside of the box but it can also make someone less dependent on God. 
People believe that they are the master of their own lives.  You're able to purchase more things because of your education.
This era gave way to a "It's all about me" society. 
I believed only what I chose to believe because God wouldn't make up rules.  Catholics are out of touch and old school. 
It was all about my happiness. 
I was part of this new age.

 Poor human reason when it trusts in itself substitutes the strange absurdities for the highest divine concepts.
~St. John Chrysostom

An accumulation of events occurred in my life, since those days of elementary school. 
Through the grace of God, those events enabled me to seek Him and my faith.
The fire started to burn in me and I didn't even realize it.
    

Learning unsupported by grace may get into our ears;  it never reaches the heart.  But when God's grace touches our innermost minds to bring understanding, His word which has been received by the ear sinks deep into the heart.
~St. Isidore of Seville
 
I had taken it upon myself to learn about my Catholic faith. 
The Church that Christ gave us is deserving of this from me. 
I wanted to understand the core beliefs of His Church.

The Eucharist
The Papacy and Peter
Confession
Salvation
The Virgin Mary
The Communion of Saints
Sacred Tradition
Authority
Purgatory
Baptism
The Bible

After studying the above, I sensed an urgency to learn more.
Yes, I was on fire. 
 
"Ask and you will be given what you ask for.  Seek, and you shall find.  Knock and the door will be opened.  For everyone who asks, receives.  Anyone who seeks finds.  If only you will knock the door will open."
~Matthew 7:7-8

I keep the embers burning through scripture reading, the catechism, books, movies, the EWTN cable network, the Internet, blogging, reading up on the saints, and by seeking counsel from our priest. 
I love to hear and read about reversion and conversion stories. 
 I learn so much from them.
What would prompt a non Catholic to choose to be Catholic? 
What would draw an atheist to Catholicism? 
I try to talk about God more and more with my husband and daughters. 
I would like to be a part of their spiritual journey.

I pray to God so that I know Him more, so I can love Him more.

Occupy your minds with good thoughts, or the enemy will find the bad ones.  Unoccupied they cannot be.
~St. Thomas More

God loves us so much that He gave us His Church for guidance, so He could always be with us.  He didn't leave us to fend for ourselves.










 

 





Friday, January 25, 2013

Our Choice Is All That The Unborn Have

There has been over 50,000,000 abortions over the past 40 years in the United States alone. 
This staggering number makes up a 6TH  of our current population today.  How many of our daughters, sisters and their children are not here today because of the right to choose?  What's really the war on women?  Women making them selves the priority or countless numbers of daughters, sisters and their children that will never have the right to life?  1/3 of my children's generation have been aborted.  Our choice is all these unborn lives have.  Choose life.   


A country that kills children is a country without hope.
~Pope John Paul II

You can't let a little bit of abortion...just like you can't let a little bit of murder.
~Nellie Gray

Injustice somewhere is an injustice everywhere.
~Martin Luthur King
 
 
 
 
Pray for the unborn and for the right to life.
 
 


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Putting Off The Journey?

  
As we live in this world do we become more leathery?  Do our hearts become hardened to God?  How does it happen that it's been 30 years since our last confession?  How long has it been since our last mass?  Has it become easy to put God on the back burner?  How does this happen?  We're all hardened to God in some way.  We all have a reason why we've put off the journey to Him.  How does one change his heart to make it new?  It's something I'll ponder today. 

The virtuous soul that is alone and without a master, is like a lone burning coal; it will grow colder rather than hotter.
~St. John of the Cross



 

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

I Reflect

 
I reflect on God's love as this Christmas season comes to an end. I think about Christ's time here on earth from His birth to His passion.  I think about how His Father sent Him here to be sacrificed for us.  How do you repay someone who chose to die for you?  Just as St. Maximilian Kolbe, the Saint of Auschwitz, did for his prison mate: you repay Him with love and by seeing God in everyone.

"God does not require of us the martyrdom of the body, He requires only the martyrdom of the heart and the will."
~St. John Vianney
     
We know how fully Christ loves us.  He didn't ascend into heaven with the purpose of leaving us. He gave us His Holy Church and the Holy Eucharist.  History shows us that The Bible didn't come off of a local printing press.  There was an authoritative Church that Jesus left us before the New Testament was ever written to determine what books would be in the New Testament.  That authoritative Church was the Catholic Church.
Delving into the Early Church Fathers I realized that Christ's Church really was Catholic and the Catholic Mass then was quite similar to today's. The Early Church Fathers were the Christian leaders who took charge of the Church following the death of the 12 apostles.

"I would not believe in the Gospels were it not for the authority for the Catholic Church."
~St. Augustine

 God did not leave us to fend for ourselves and interpret the bible as we please.  It's all so awesome.  It's all about His love for us.  How can I not want to know this God?  It was all part of His plan.

"The more we love God, the more we will want to love Him."
~St. Joaquina

As Catholics, we have been given great treasures.  He has given us tools through His Church in tradition, scripture, prayer, and His sacraments.  Let us move forward and get to know God.  Let us learn our faith and learn why our Church stands for what She does. This is our responsibility!  God can't steer a parked car.  We must take the initiative to seek Him.
 Individualism and materialism have played a big part of my life.  I'm not nearly perfect with my relationship with God but I know He's the answer.  He's the way.
With the grace of God, I found my life to be unfruitful and unfulfilled.  He was always calling.  I resisted.  After many years, I finally picked up the receiver.  It's the same for all of us.  He's always calling.  It's up to us to decide when we'll answer His call.  It's never too late.

"To love God you need three hearts in one--a heart of fire for Him, a heart of flesh for your neighbor, and a heart of bronze for yourself."
~St. Benedict Joseph Labre

 When the suffering I shall endure in this life becomes to much for me to bear, I know where to go for hope, strength, and love.  God help my unbelief is a powerful, short prayer I've said through out the years when I've been a doubting Thomas.

"Be not afraid to tell Jesus that you love Him; even though it be without feeling, this is the way to oblige Him to help you, and carry you like a little child to feeble to walk."
~St. Therese of Lisieux

As I journey towards my next life, I thank God for His Love.
Because of His love, I have been given hope.  It was all part of His plan.

"As it is, these remain: faith, hope and love, the three of them; and the greatest of them is love."
~1 Corinthians 13:13